One of the largest and best high school cross country meets in the country takes place this Friday and Saturday under the lights at the SilverLakes Sports Complex in Norco as the Skechers Woodbridge Classic returns for its 37th running.
The meet, which will feature more than 300 teams and 13,000 athletes, returns to the SilverLakes Sports Complex for the second year in a row. The course is flat and fast and mostly run on soccer field turf and dirt surfaces.
A new girls’ individual event record was established last year on the course as Brie Oakley from Grandview in Colorado won the sweepstakes race in 15:53.6. Two athletes broke 14 minutes on the boys side and Luis Grijalva (13:58.0) just missed the meet record.
The field is loaded again for the seeded and sweepstakes races with top teams and runners from all over the country.
The Great Oak girls and boys, each ranked No. 1 in CIF Division 1, are in the sweepstakes races. Campo Verde and Desert Vista from Arizona, Desert Hills from Utah, Palmer Ridge from Colorado and Southlake Carroll from Texas are some of the top non-California schools in the sweepstakes field on the boys side.
Vista Murrieta, Capistrano Valley, The Woodlands from Texas, Southlake Carroll, Desert Vista, Palmer Ridge and Desert Hills are among the top teams for the girls.
Northwood’s girls team, led by standout sophomore Aleks Crampton, is also in the sweepstakes race on Saturday night.
The girls varsity rated race goes off at 8:54 p.m. on Saturday night with the boys rated race to follow at 9:14 p.m.
The Bob Day girls sweepstakes race is at 9:34 p.m. with the Doug Speck boys sweepstakes race at 9:54 p.m.
Meet director and longtime former Woodbridge head coach George Varvas and his vast team of volunteers will surely put on another great event.
Laguna Hills Invitational kicks off season
The annual Laguna Hills Invitational started the cross country season for many city teams last Saturday.
Beckman’s boys team finished 11th in total team time at 1:24:02. University was 27th at 1:26:52.
Beckman’s girls team came in 13th at 1:43:33 and University was 21st at 1:45:17.
The fastest individual time on the day from a boys city runner was turned in by Beckman’s Bailey Ipcizade, who ran 16:31 in a junior race. He had the 45th-fastest time among all boys in the meet.
Also for Beckman, Caleb Suhr ran 16:43 in a junior race, Rahul Aggarwal finished in 16:45 in a sophomore race and Ryan Muto ran 16:55 in a junior race.
Beckman won titles in Division 2 with its freshmen and junior squads.
The top time among girls runners from the city was turned in by University freshman Collette Lowengrub in 19:57. She won her Division 2 freshman race, had the fifth-fastest freshman time of the day and was the 31st girl overall.
University’s Avery Klauke finished in 20:00 in a sophomore race, Beckman’s Mackenzie Eloe ran 20:07 and Olivia Knobbe ran 20:08 in a sophomore race and Beckman’s Susana Ferro finished in 20:37 in a senior race.
Northwood freshman Emily Odom ran 20:39 and was the 12th-best ninth grader in the meet.
Woodbridge competes in Pasadena
Woodbridge’s teams went to a new meet on Friday night in Pasadena. The Warriors competed in the Cool Breeze Invitational next to the Rose Bowl.
The Warrior boys took 19th in the seeded race.
Junior Caleb Terefe was 62nd in 16:08.8 and junior Benjamin Choi finished 63rd in 16:08.9 for the Warriors.
Woodbridge’s girls team finished ninth in the varsity red race. Woodbridge was paced by junior Mariam Masud, who placed ninth in 19:19.7.
Junior Amber Jung was 53rd in 20:32.8 for the Warriors.